The 2021 general elections might be months behind us but all pointers predict an even more promising prospect of an exciting treat in the months to come.
An election atmosphere is brewing for our Eastern neighbours- Kenya in a historical encounter mainly projected to be between former Prime Minister Raila Omollo Odinga and William Samoei Ruto, the reigning Deputy President of Kenya.
What’s even more attractive about it is the fact that President Uhuru Kenyatta, ineligible for reelection in 2022 seems to have wholly made up his mind to endorse Odinga’s bid against 2012, 2017 ally- Ruto.
Desperate to have what Odinga has in Uhuru that he has not, Ruto seems to have zeroed down on a strategy to fish Uganda’s strong man General Yoweri Kaguta Museveni on his side.
In July, the Kenyan DP was hosted by Museveni in an official visit to lay the foundation stone for a vaccine factory in Matugga, Wakiso District. Back in Kenya, the visit was largely treated with suspicion, with many opining it was entirely politically motivated.
Reports of interception of sacks of cash at the Busia border point, allegedly belonging to Ruto on his way from Kampala would further give credence to the suspicions back home.
Yet both Uhuru and Ruto are said to be proud owners of a string of business establishments in real estate, Diary, Oil and gas industries, the former seems to be unwilling to allow his deputy politically profiteer from the Ugandan connections at the expense of his new ally – Raila Odinga.
Days later, Ruto’s planned visit back to Uganda was frustrated as tensions soured. Strong corruption and money laundering accusations against Ruto followed.
Kenyan MPs loyal to Odinga Uhuru even went further to criticise the Museveni led National Resistance Movement (NRM) Party over what they called a bad record not worth associating with for Ruto.
Although Museveni has since remained tight-lipped on the saga, the NRM Secretariate responded to the utterences of the ODM MPs saying they were baseless and unfortunate for the party has democratically been subjected to a general vote and won on each of the occasions since 1996, and so has been it’s leader Museveni.
As the saga approaches boiling point back in Kenya, Rtd. Col Kizza Besigye seems determined to follow Museveni for a challenge on a foreign tuff.
Besigye, Museveni’s most consistent challenger since 2001 was for the first time in 20 years not on the ballot for the January 14 polls. Although he is reported to have defied all pleas from his party members to have him on the ballot, it’s safer to say he was harrassed out of the race by National Unity Platform bullies who repetitively mudslid him causing him not to doing enough to depose Museveni in his 20 years of leading the opposition.
Naturally, Museveni would be the outright beneficiary since the biggest majority of Besigye’s Forum for Democratic Change ( FDC) would not stand seeing a man that had “destroyed” their godfather blossom with their support. “Rather the devil you know.”
Besigye’s support from Kasese, Teso, Mbale, Acholi, Lango and West Nile- perenially his strongholds went to Museveni, places he had rarely won in on most the previous elections.
But Besigye seems is not yet over the humiliation. He will follow Museveni wherever, to give him one punch, even if it will be the last one, even if it’s from far from home.
Last week, the four-time Presidential Candidate was in Nairobi to pay a visit to his Kenyqn counterpart- Odinga. The exact contents of the encounter might have remained a secret but at least Odinga revealed it was related to their political liberation struggles.
Year 2022 presents a clearer opportunity for Odinga, Besigye’s long time oppositionally to win, especially with the backing of Uhuru. If Museveni is going to back Ruto, like it looks ascertain he will, then Besigye will certainly go with Odinga.
As 2022 approaches, therefore, one should rather get prepared to witness at least one last phase of the Museveni – Besigye fierce rivalry once more.
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